Thanksgiving Menu!

As I mentioned in a previous post, David and I will be preparing a majority of the Thanksgiving Dinner at his parents house this year to give them a littler break! I am kind of excited about it and thought that I would share the menu we came up with! Im pretty excited about it! and I can’t wait to let you guys know how it turned out! However, I figured it would be more helpful if you were looking for some last minute recipes to round out your meal, if I posted the receipts prior to Thanksgiving.

Thanksgiving Menu: 

Roasted Turkey: This is a turkey from a previous post, so I can tell you if you are looking for a delicious and simple turkey to try this year, this one comes with my HIGEST recommendations!
1 cup Apple Cider Vinegar
1/8 cup salt
1/4 cup pepper
1/4 cup oil
1 Thawed whole Turkey

Mix ingredients in an browning bag. Remove turkey innards and place turkey inside the bag with the mixture and seal. Massage the mixture into the turkey and then place turkey in a roasting pan breast side DOWN. Cook in the oven for 4-5 hours at 300 degrees.

Wild Rice and Mushroom Casserole: This one is from Garden & Gun so we have high hopes for it, I know Thanksgiving is the day of the casserole, so you typically have your green bean and sweet potato, etc. but we wanted to try something different so were gonna give this one a whirl!

2 cup wild rice, 
cooked according to 
package directions
6 tbsp. unsalted butter
8 tbsp. minced onion
4 tbsp. minced 
green pepper
16 oz. white mushrooms, trimmed and sliced
2 cans condensed cream 
of mushroom soup
2 cups heavy cream
1/2 tsp. dried basil
1/2tsp. dried tarragon
1 tsp. curry powder
Coarse salt and ground black pepper to taste

Preparation: Preheat oven to 350˚F.
In a heavy-bottomed ovenproof pot over moderate heat, melt butter until foamy and sauté onion, pepper, and mushrooms until softened and aromatic, about 8 to 10 minutes. Stir in soup, cream, and spices. Add cooked rice, stirring to combine, and transfer to preheated oven. Bake until soup and cream are absorbed and the rice thickens, about 40 to 50 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

Stuffing: We made this last year and it is literally the BEST stuffing ever. Its not as dense as a typical stuffing, and the cranberries and apples give it a nice sweet taste, its amazing, If you make nothing else form this post, you need to make this, it will change your thanksgiving!

2 loaves of day old French bread, cut into 3/4-inch cubes (about 10-12 cups)
2 cups walnuts
4 cups chopped onion
4 cups chopped celery
12 Tbsp butter
2 green apple, peeled, cored, chopped
1 1/2 cup raisins
Several (5 to 10) chopped green olives (martini olives, the ones with the pimento)
Stock from the turkey giblets (2-3 cups) (can substitute chicken stock)
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
2 teaspoon poultry seasoning or ground sage (to taste)
Salt and freshly ground pepper (to taste)

1 If you haven’t already made the stock, take the turkey giblets – heart and gizzard – and neck if you want, and put them in a small saucepan, cover with water and add a little salt. Bring to a simmer; simmer for about an hour, uncovered. Strain the stock into a container for use with the stuffing. Alternatively, you can use chicken stock or just plain water with this recipe.
2 Toast the walnuts by heating them in a frying pan on medium high heat for a few minutes, stirring until they are slightly browned (not burned) OR put them in the microwave on high until you can smell the aroma of them toasting, about a minute or two. Let them cool while you are toasting the bread, then roughly chop them.
3 Heat a large sauté pan on medium heat. Melt 3 Tbsp butter in the pan, add the bread cubes, and stir to coat the bread pieces with the melted butter. Then let them toast; only turn them when they have become a little browned on a side. Note, if you aren’t working with somewhat dried-out day-old bread, lay the cubes of bread in a baking pan and put them in a hot oven for 10 minutes to dry them out first, before toasting them in butter on the stove top. The bread should be a little dry to begin with, or you’ll end up with mushy stuffing.
4 In a large Dutch oven, sauté chopped onions and celery on medium high heat with the remaining 3 Tbsp butter until cooked through, about 5-10 minutes. Add the bread. Add cooked chopped walnuts. Add chopped green apple, currants, raisins, olives, parsley. Add one cup of the stock from cooking the turkey giblets or chicken stock (enough to keep the stuffing moist while you are cooking it). Add sage, poultry seasoning, salt & pepper.
5 Cover. Turn heat to low. Cook for an hour or until the apples are cooked through. Check every ten minutes or so and add water or stock as needed while cooking to keep the stuffing moist and keep it from sticking to the bottom of the pan.

Cranberry Sauce: This one comes to use homemade by Pioneer Woman, so I also have pretty high expectations for this one, because people always talk about how great her recipes are, so hopefully she doesn’t let us down, but this one sounds great!

1 bag (12 Oz. Bag) Cranberries
1 cup Cranberry Juice (or Orange, Apple Or Any Ot¬her Juice Combination)
1 cup Pure Maple Syrup (not Pancake Syrup!)
3 Tablespoons Juice (you Could Also Do Orange Zest, Lemon Zest, Lemon Juice – Anything Citrusy)

Preparation Instructions
Wash bag of cranberries under cool water, then dump into a medium saucepan.
Pour in 1 cup of cranberry juice (or whatever juice you choose).
Pour in 1 cup maple syrup.
Add orange juice (you could also do orange zest, lemon zest, lemon juice – anything citrusy).
Stir together and turn heat on high until it reaches a boil.
Once it comes to a rolling boil, turn the heat down to medium low and continue cooking over lower heat for about 10 minutes, or until the juice is thick. Cut heat.

David’s Mom is going to make a sweet potato soufflé  and some mac and cheese in the crockpot, but those are her recipes so I dont have those to share with you guys, but we had them last year and they were wonderful and delicious annnnnd her sweet potato soufflé  is to. die. for.

Pumpkin Trifle: Per usual, I need to change things up so I didnt want to make just an apple pie, or pumpkin pie, or whatever, so I found this fun little holiday dessert I am going to try, and I have my fingers crossed that it will be top notch, because it sure sounds like it!

1 package (14-1/2 ounces) gingerbread cake mix
1-1/4 cups water
1 egg
4 cups cold fat-free milk
4 packages (1 ounce each) sugar-free instant butterscotch pudding mix
1 can (15 ounces) solid-pack pumpkin
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon each ground ginger, nutmeg and allspice
1 carton (12 ounces) frozen reduced-fat whipped topping, thawed

In a large bowl, combine the cake mix, water and egg, beat on low speed for 30 seconds. Beat on medium for 2 minutes. Pour into an ungreased 8-in. square baking pan.
Bake at 350° for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pan to a wire rack. When completely cooled, crumble the cake. Set aside 1/4 cup crumbs for garnish.
In a large bowl, whisk milk and pudding mixes for 2 minutes or until thickened. Stir in pumpkin and spices until well blended.
In a trifle bowl or 3-1/2-qt. glass serving bowl, layer a fourth of the cake crumbs, half of the pumpkin mixture, a fourth of the cake crumbs and half of the whipped topping. Repeat layers. Garnish with reserved cake crumbs. Serve immediately or refrigerate until serving. 

So wish us luck, hopefully we dont ruin the holiday meal!!!! Like I said, I will let you know how it all goes! Happy Turkey Day!


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